It’s 1 p.m. – just after your lunch break – and you can feel yourself slipping, slipping, slipping into an unwelcome post-meal nap. How are you supposed to complete your assignments when exhaustion envelops you like a thick, heavy fog? If you’re tired of feeling tired, try these simple tricks to get some more energy.
1. Get Sufficient Sleep
Simple science: you use your fuel during the day and require hours of unconsciousness to replenish. Actor Matthew McConaughey swears by 8.5 hours of sleep each night. “I’m not near as good the next day if I get less,” he once told People magazine.
2. Eat Your Energy
Brownies and Cheetos are darn tasty, but they won’t give you long-lasting energy. Reach for from-the-earth options like fruits, vegetables, nuts and whole grains. These foods carry protein and fiber, giving you hours of stamina instead of the minute-long jolt one gets from eating cheese curls.
Take a lesson from Carly Rae Jepson. The singer, most famous for her song “Call Me Maybe,” told Bon Appétit: “I have the same thing for breakfast every day: vanilla yogurt with granola and fruit. And if I can get my hands on some boiled eggs, I go for those, too.”
Go out and get your heart pumping. Exercise releases endorphins that will leave you feeling happy and awake. Plus, if you break a sweat during the day, you’ll sleep better at night. Double win!
4. Put Effort Into Your Appearance
When you’re confident in your appearance, you’ll feel more alive. There’s no denying we’re our least energetic selves when we’re at home, on the couch, looking ugly. Get a new haircut, buy a new outfit or try a new shade of lipstick – when you feel attractive, you’ll get a jolt every time someone looks at you.
5. Be Social
Don’t waste your beauty efforts in solitude. Surround your pretty self with conversation and laughter in order to boost your spirits and vivacity. Audrey Hepburn once said, “I love people who make me laugh. I honestly think it’s the thing I like most, to laugh. It cures a multitude of ills. It’s probably the most important thing in a person.” In order to reap the benefits of socializing, opt for positive, happy companions.
6. Cut Caffeine Midday
Caffeine lingers in your system for hours after your last cup. This can hinder your ability to fall asleep and lower your rest quality when you do sleep. Even decaf varieties have traces of caffeine, so choose your drinks wisely (choose water!).
7. Drink Lots of Water
Hydration is key in all factors of health, and sleep is no exception. Your body will work harder to pump blood and carry out all of its functions if your cells are thirsty. A-listers like Beyoncé, Jessica Alba and Miranda Kerr all swear by the powers of water. If drinking enough is tough for you, grab some celery, broccoli or juicy fruits to get some water through your foods.
8. Don’t Booze Yourself to Sleep
Drinking alcohol before sleep – or even, dare I say it, to put yourself to sleep – is actually a bad idea. Boozed-up sleep is restless and low quality, which will leave you with regrets the next day.
9. Be Your Own Cheerleader
Basking in self-pity is the surest way to use up (or should I say waste?) all of your energy. Congratulate yourself for triumphs and use compliments generously. When you feel down, look for positives and seek company that will give you some good energy. Do not take to sulking alone on the couch!
10. Let Go of Stress
Whether it’s work, family or personal issues, life is full of stressors that are determined to tire us out (or so it may seem). Tackle these things one at a time, and seek help if necessary.
11. Let Go of Jealousy
Jealousy, like stress and general negativity, can suck up our resources, resulting in a tired, dried-up existence. It’s natural to want what others have, but it is a self-destroying practice. Consider all of the things you have. Prioritize gratefulness and shift your perspective toward the bright side.
12. Smile More
It’s life’s cheapest, most effective accessory! Smiling more can actually lift your spirits and make you feel more energetic. Like I said before, every interaction is an exchange of energy. If you’re smiling at someone, the other person is more likely to respond with her own positive energy.
13. Write To-Do Lists
If you’re feeling bogged down with tasks, take to writing lists. This may make it seem like you have even more to do, but it will really help you rank the items by importance. Complete the minor items first, checking them off as you go. You’ll feel more accomplished, setting you on a productivity roll.
14. Get Fresh Air
Fill your lungs with the great outdoors to make your cells feel more alive. Your body can complete its internal workings easier when cells are at their best. Rain, wind and sunshine will also engage your sensory system and wake you up to your surroundings.
15. Listen to Music
There’s a reason people call it “pump up” music. Certain varieties can really give you a push. Your body can feel the rhythm and fend off the tiredness. Look at athletes: Olympic gold medalist Michael Phelps has a workout playlist that revs him up for competitions. It certainly works for him!
16. Take a Shower
Finally, if you need an immediate boost, hop in the shower. The water, which will be more effective when cold, will give you the jolt you need to finish the day’s duties.
Incorporate one or more of these into your life in order to wind up and do more.
Featured photo credit: Viktor Hanacek via picjumbo.com